Bee Sting Cake

Happy Mother’s Day!

I keep filling this planter my husband built me a few years ago with some leftover pavers, these tulips were from a few years ago, this year there are some daffodils up and they are pretty but they are all the same color, I think I like the variations of different colors. look like I’ll be planting colorful tulips for next year.

I made a beautiful cake last week for our World Wide Wednesday dinner. We “traveled” to Germany and my daughter suggested I make a German Bee Sting Cake (bienenstich). I have never heard of it before and it seems I have also never made pastry cream before.  That seems to be the trend going on here. Another recipe she thought I should make for our dinner, I made puff pastry and didn’t even know it. I guess she likes expanding or is it testing my baking abilities.

There are many variations online and theories to how it got it’s name.  Here is wikipedia’s version “One source for the origin of bienenstich cites a legend of German bakers from the 15th century who lobbed beehives at raiders from a neighboring village, successfully repelling them, and celebrated later by baking a version of this cake named after their efforts” I don’t really know but it was a huge hit after our German meal of Weibwurst, Rotkohl, Spatzle and pumpernickel bread.

I hope you all have a wonderful day with whatever you plan on doing. I am about to get go dressed to go grocery shopping – that’s me just living the dream!

This recipe is adapted from Smitten Kitchen

German Bee Sting Cake

A yeast layered cake filled with pastry cream
Course Dessert



  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • teaspoons instant yeast
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup milk at room temperature
  • 2 large eggs at room temperature
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter softened

honey-almond topping

  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature
  • cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 2 pinches salt
  • cups sliced almonds

pastry cream

  • 1 cup whole milk
  • ½ vanilla bean seeds scraped
  • 3 large egg yolks
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons corn starch
  • 1 pinch salt
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter


  • Combine the flour, sugar, yeast, and salt in a large bowl Stir to combine. add the milk, eggs, and butter. Stir the batter together until it is well combined. The batter will look somewhere between a loose bread dough and a thick cake batter. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let it rise in a draft-free spot for an hour. It won't double in size but be a little more airy.
  • Butter a 9-inch cake pan and line it with parchment paper. Stir the batter a few times to deflate it slightly, then scrape it into the prepared pan and spread it until it more or less fills the bottom of the pan. Cover again with plastic wrap and set aside for another 30 minutes. While the cake is rising again preheat the oven to 350° F and make the honey-almond topping.
  • In a medium saucepan over medium heat, heat the butter, sugar, honey, cream, and salt, stirring occasionally until the butter is melted. Bring to a simmer and let it boil for 3 to 5 minutes, the mixture should become a shade darker; going from yellow to light beige, stirring frequently. Stir in the almonds. The mixture will be very thick and sticky. Set it aside to cool slightly.
  • Once the cake has risen and the honey-almond topping has cooled slightly, using a spoon place small amounts of the topping over the cake batter. Make sure to spread almond mixutre over the entire top of the cake, all of the way to the edges.
  • Note: place a baking sheet on the lower rake of your oven to catch any drips
  • Bake the cake for 20 to 25 minutes, until top is golden and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Transfer to a cooling rack and let it sit in the pan for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, run a knife along the outside of the cake and invert it onto a cooling rack. Invert it back onto another rack to cool completely. While the cake is cooling, make the pastry cream.

pastry cream

  • In a medium saucepan, warm the milk, vanilla bean pod, and vanilla bean seeds until it comes to a simmer. Set aside to steep for 30 minutes.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, cornstarch, and salt until pale yellow and smooth. After the milk has steeped, remove the vanilla bean pod, rewarm it slightly, then whisk it into the egg mixture.
  • Pour the mixture back into the saucepan and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until it begins to bubble. Cook the mixture for 1 full minute, then take the pan off of the heat and whisk in the butter.
  • Transfer the cream to a bowl then press a length of plastic wrap on the surface. Refrigerate until completely cool.
  • To assemble the cake: When the cake and pastry cream are completely cooled, slice the cake in half horizontally. Stir the pastry cream to loosen it slightly, then spread it over the bottom of the cake. Top with the almond-crusted layer and serve immediately. You can store leftover cake, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 3 days but we found it best to be eaten the day it was made.
Keyword Bee Stink Cake, German, pastry cream, Yeast cake


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